Saturday, February 4, 2017

Ken Allan Dronsfield writes and multimediates

Jack Speaks, R3

"Although intoxicated within my ethereal madness,
bound within the chains of soulless treason,
I'm desperately in love with this Gothic sadness
whilst staring into the mists of disheartened reason
Walking and stalking through the dark rancid streets,
stopping for shots as the pain's finally receding. 
Through smoke and crowds, so reverent and discreet. 
A bottle to the abyss, heartless and bleeding.

See their frightened eyes view my crumpled prize
there in the lane of the White Chapel fame.
A gutter splashed with blood and wasted faceless lives:
Feeling not of blame, nor absolved pious shame.

Muffled be the moans through incised dreams.
Inhaling a mind while exhaling into hell.
Humming in rhyme of hope and whispered screams.
Clock talks bye, and so should I pack and leave as well."


  1. Jack the Ripper was a serial killer active in the impoverished areas around the Whitechapel district of London; in October 1888, there were 62 brothels and 1,200 prostitutes there. Five of them -- Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes, and Mary Jane Kelly -- were murdered between 31 August and 9 November 1888. Nichols' body was discovered at about 3:40 a.m. on Friday 31 August in Buck's Row (now Durward Street). The throat was severed by two cuts from left to right, and the lower part of the abdomen was partly ripped open by a deep, jagged wound. Several other incisions on the abdomen were caused by the same knife. Chapman's body was discovered at about 6 a.m. on Saturday 8 September near a doorway in the back yard of 29 Hanbury Street, Spitalfields. The throat was severed by two cuts from left to right, the abdomen was slashed entirely open, and the uterus was removed. Stride and Eddowes were killed in the early morning of Sunday 30 September. Stride's body was discovered at about 1 a.m. in Dutfield's Yard, off Berner Street (now Henriques Street). The cause of death was one clear-cut incision from left to right, which severed the main artery on the left side of the neck and partially removed, but there were no mutilations. Eddowes' body was found in Mitre Square in the City of London, three-quarters of an hour after Stride's. The throat was severed from left to right and the abdomen was ripped open by a long, deep, jagged wound. The left kidney and the major part of the uterus had been removed. Part of Eddowes' bloodied apron was found at the entrance to a tenement in Goulston Street. Some writing on the wall above the apron piece seemed to implicate a Jew or Jews, but it was unclear whether the graffito was written by the murderer as he dropped the apron piece or was merely incidental; fearing that it might spark anti-semitic riots, a police commissioner ordered it washed away before dawn.

  2. Thus far the killer had been dubbed the "Red Fiend," "The Whitechapel Murderer," or "Leather Apron" in the press, but on 27 September the Central News Agency received a letter in red inkpostmarked 25 September addressed to "The Boss, Central News Office, London, City;" it was not passed on to the Metropolitan Police until two days later:
    "Dear Boss,
    I keep on hearing the police have caught me but they wont fix me just yet. I have laughed when they look so clever and talk about being on the right track. That joke about Leather Apron gave me real fits. I am down on whores and I shant quit ripping them till I do get buckled. Grand work the last job was. I gave the lady no time to squeal.

    How can they catch me now. I love my work and want to start again. You will soon hear of me with my funny little games. I saved some of the proper red stuff in a ginger beer bottle over the last job to write with but it went thick like glue and I cant use it. Red ink is fit enough I hope ha ha. The next job I do I shall clip the ladys ears off and send to the police officers just for jolly wouldn't you. Keep this letter back till I do a bit more work, then give it out straight.

    My knife's so nice and sharp I want to get to work right away if I get a chance.

    Good Luck.
    Yours truly
    Jack the Ripper

    Dont mind me giving the trade name. Wasnt good enough to post this before I got all the red ink off my hands curse it No luck yet. They say I'm a doctor now. ha ha"

    In the early mail on Monday 1 October a postcard postmarked the same day arrived at the Central News Agency, the same day that the police released the text of the letter. It too was scrawled in red ink but appeared to have bloodstains on it as well:

    "I was not codding dear old Boss when I gave you the tip, you'll hear about Saucy Jacky's work tomorrow double event this time number one squealed a bit couldn't finish straight off had not the time to get ears for police. thanks for keeping last letter back till I got to work again.
    Jack the Ripper.”

    Scotland Yard published facsimiles of the letter and postcard on 3 October, in the hope that someone would recognize the handwriting; the main effect, however, was to provide the press with a moniker that would stick. (In the 7 October issue of "Referee" George R. Sims suggested that the "Jack the Ripper" letter was written by a journalist "to hurl the circulation of a newspaper sky high." In 1913 John George Littlechild, who had been the head of Special Branch when the Jack the Ripper murders were taking place, confirmed that "it was generally believed at the Yard" that Thomas J. Bulling, who worked at the Central News Agency, "was the originator" of both the letter and the postcard, but that it was "probable" that Charles Moore, "who was his chief, was the inventor. It was a smart piece of journalistic work.")

  3. A large team of policemen conducted house-to-house inquiries throughout Whitechapel. More than 2,000 people were interviewed, "upwards of 300" were investigated, and 80 were detained. Police surgeon Thomas Bond performed the first-ever offender profile, based on his own examination of the last victim and the post mortem notes from the previous ones. Nevertheless, the press criticized the alleged incompetence of the police. A group of volunteer citizens, the Whitechapel Vigilance Committee, patrolled the streets looking for suspicious characters, petitioned the government to issue a reward for information, and hired private detectives to question witnesses independently. Its leader, George Lusk, received a letter and a small box with half a human kidney preserved in etanol. In handwriting that was unlike that of the earlier letter and postcard, the letter read: "From hell—Mr Lusk—Sir I send you half the kidne I took from one woman prasarved it for you tother piece I fried and ate it was very nise I may send you the bloody knif that took it out if you only wate a whil longer—Signed Catch me when you can Mishter Lusk." Kelly's mutilated and disemboweled body was discovered lying on the bed in the single room where she lived at 13 Miller's Court, off Dorset Street, Spitalfields, at 10:45 a.m. on Friday 9 November. The throat had been severed down to the spine, her face hacked away, and the abdomen almost emptied of its organs, though only the heart was missing from the crime scene. The killer remained unidentified, though over 100 suspects have been named, including Edward VII's eldest child Albert Victor, duke of Clarence and Avondale. In 1996 Richard Wallace published "Jack the Ripper, Light-Hearted Friend," proposing the theory hat the murdered was Charles L. Dodgson ("Lewis Carroll"), based primarily on a number of anagrams in two books he was drafting at the time of the murders, "The Nursery 'Alice'," (an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" for younger readers) and the first volume of "Sylvie and Bruno." (When "Harper's Magazine" excerpted the book, Francis Heaney and Guy Jacobson took Wallace's opening "This is my story of Jack the Ripper, the man behind Britain's worst unsolved murders. It is a story that points to the unlikeliest of suspects: a man who wrote children's stories. That man is Charles Dodgson, better known as Lewis Carroll, author of such beloved books as Alice in Wonderland." and discovered the following anagram: "The truth is this: I, Richard Wallace, stabbed and killed a muted Nicole Brown in cold blood, severing her throat with my trusty shiv's strokes. I set up Orenthal James Simpson, who is utterly innocent of this murder. P.S. I also wrote Shakespeare's sonnets, and a lot of Francis Bacon's works too.")


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